Our roots go back to the 18th century. One of the founders, in 1770, of the Bristol Law Society (the oldest in the country) was Daniel Burges, and his son went on to become City Solicitor (from 1822) and Town Clerk, practising in partnership with William Brice. His grandson, Edward Burges, qualified as solicitor in 1837 and founded the firm as sole practitioner in 1841, in a building a few streets away from our current site.

On our founder's death in 1890, the practice was continued by his son Colonel WEP Burges, and a partnership with WJ Sloan led to the firm becoming Burges & Sloan. Between 1897 and 1962, the firm was based in Marsh Street, and changed name several times. In the 1920s, new partner Wilfred Scammell joined the firm and later wrote The Law of Agricultural Holdings, a text book which brought national recognition for the firm's agricultural practice. Now a work bearing the names of two former partners of the firm, Scammell & Densham, its ninth edition was published in 2007.

In 1946 the firm lost its longest-serving member of staff, Edwin Light Wyatt, who had served the firm for over 80 years. He received a letter from King George VI congratulating him on his extraordinary record of long service.

In 1947 the partnership was joined by Stuart Evans, who was then practising alone as Salmon, Cumberland and Evans. The firm's move to Narrow Quay House in 1982 saw the shortening of the firm’s name to "Burges Salmon". Since that date, the firm has grown to become one of the most respected and professional commercial firms in the country.

In 2010, we moved to One Glass Wharf, a modern office building in the Bristol Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone.

In 2016, we refreshed our brand to better reflect our values, our people and the modernity of our offices in Bristol and London.

In 2019, we opened a new office in Edinburgh in response to client needs and to demonstrate our commitment to the Scottish market.

In 2020, we were named UK Law Firm of the Year and Energy and Infrastructure Team of the Year at Legal Week’s annual British Legal Awards.

In 2020, we opened a wholly owned subsidiary office in Dublin to enable our internationally renowned Intellectual Property practice to continue to deliver its market-leading expertise and insight in the EU across a range of industry sectors after the Brexit transition period ended (from 1 January 2021). Read more in our press release.